Eating Healthfully in a Modern World: A Word About Cost
Instead of complaining about the cost of fresh, organic produce, I think we should realize the great value these amazing foods hold. They feed your body, nourishing every cell you have and giving your mitochondria the fuel they need to do their job. There really is NO substitute. You can not feed your body in any other way and still have good health. It is that important.
The fact is we are willing to give Starbucks ﬁve dollars a day for a fancy, sugary, health-rob bing coffee that we don’t need instead of spending the same amount of money on organic produce that we require. Yes, require! You can not argue with physiology. Our bodies can not adapt to cheap junk food….they just get sick. Once we realize that everything that goes in our mouths will either promote or destroy health, the choices become a lot easier to make.
Unfortunately, it is not enough to just say “Eat your vegetables”. You can’t have one salad and think you’ve covered your bases for the day. The fact is we need a wide variety of vegetables. The starting point is with lots of leafy greens, such as various lettuces, spinach, chard, kale, dandelion greens, turnip greens, beet greens, watercress and leafy herbs to name a few.
Greens are heavy on the B-vitamins, which are important for the brain to operate optimally and for the liver to detoxify properly. These are the vitamins that control mood, focus, learn- ing and impulse control. Leafy greens also contain a fair amount of beta-carotene, a precursor to Vitamin A, which helps build healthy skin, muscles and hair. Other antioxidants found in greens include Vitamins C and E as well as lutein and zeaxanthin which are important nutrients that help prevent macular degeneration and may protect vision. Greens are also loaded with minerals like calcium and iron.
We also need sulfur-rich vegetables such as cauliﬂower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, collard greens, onions, leeks and garlic. These contain sulphoraphane and other sulfur compounds that aid in detoxiﬁcation and are some of the most anti-cancer foods on the planet.
Next up are the colors. These plant pigments act as anti-oxidants, anti-inﬂammatories, detox- iﬁers and regulators in every cell in the body. Think beets, sweet potatoes, blueberries, kiwi, red cabbage and carrots to name a few.
Many have rationalized eating fast food, packaged and processed stuff is just more affordable. Well here’s the thing, an average fast food meal is now $6.50, that’s $26.00 for a family of four. This meal is toxic, with no nutrient value. On the other hand, you can feed a family of four a big roasted chicken, sweet potatoes, two heads of broccoli and some sautéed greens for less. Cost is not the issue here, time is. Make the time and invest in your family's health now….or pay later with poor health and health care costs.